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Gondwana adds Palmwag and Omarunga lodges to portfolio

Gondwana adds Palmwag and Omarunga lodges to portfolio

Gondwana Collection Namibia earlier this week announced the addition of two attractive lodges to their product range as of 1 May.

The lodges formerly owned by Birgit and Fritz Schenk, are Palmwag Lodge, with its large concession area in Damaraland and Omarunga Lodge, located close to the Epupa Falls on the banks of the Kunene River in the far north of the Kunene Region.

While the Schenk couple will remain active in tourism with their tour company Camelthorn Tours & Safaris, new opportunities are opening up for Gondwana in a previously rather untouched and untapped part of Namibia.

“Our decision to part with Palmwag and Omarunga is based on personal reasons. We poured our lifeblood into the two lodges and invested a lot into the local communities and nature conservation as part of our sustainability concept. It pleases us to pass both lodges on to Gondwana, which has a similar corporate philosophy,” the Schenk couple said.

This is a great investment by Gondwana into community based tourism in Namibia as the lodges are two iconic destinations said Gondwana’s Managing Director, Gys Joubert.

Palmwag Lodge manages the surrounding concession area, a vast nature reserve that covers 5,500 km². The Palmwag Concession consists of the Torra, Anabeb and Sesfontein conservancies and borders on Skeleton Coast Park. With over 100 lions, cheetahs, leopards and brown and spotted hyenas Palmwag’s predator population is the largest outside Etosha National Park. Birdlife is prolific and diverse, and most of Namibia’s endemics are found there. The Palmwag Concession is home to a healthy population of the legendary desert-adapted elephant and black rhino.

On the other hand, Omarunga Lodge in the far north of the Kunene Region enchants with its unique location just 200 metres upstream from the spectacle of Epupa Falls. The Epupa area has much to offer: stunning sunsets, imposing mountain ranges, an interesting birdlife and a glorious riverine landscape. The Kunene is one of the iconic perennial rivers in Namibia. The area around Epupa Falls boasts richly coloured rock walls, a variety of trees including wild figs, baobabs and Makalani palms. Kaokoland is home to the Himba tribe who still lead a traditional way of life.

“We are looking forward to play our role in conservation and in bringing tourism benefits closer to the people on the ground by working closely with Torra, Anabeb and Sesfontein Conservancies at Palmwag and the Epupa Conservancy up at Epupa. At Gondwana we believe that in the long term tourism is not sustainable unless it is inclusive,” Joubert added.

Meanwhile, Gondwana will honour all obligations and bookings accepted by Palmwag and Omarunga. Terms and conditions valid before the sale will continue to apply until 31 October. The terms and conditions of the Gondwana Collection Namibia will come into effect on 1 November.


 

About The Author

Donald Matthys

Donald Matthys has been part of the media fraternity since 2015. He has been working at the Namibia Economist for the past three years mainly covering business, tourism and agriculture. Donald occasionally refers to himself as a theatre maker and has staged two theatre plays so far. Follow him on twitter at @zuleitmatthys

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

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20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.